Southwest Airlines Cancellation Policy

Southwest Airlines Cancellation Policy

When it comes to air travel, unforeseen circumstances can sometimes disrupt our plans, forcing us to make last-minute changes or even cancel our flights. Understanding the Southwest Airlines Cancellation Policy is crucial in such situations, as it determines whether you’ll be able to reschedule your trip or receive a refund. 

In this article, we will delve into Southwest Airlines Cancellation Policy, offering you a comprehensive guide to navigate any unexpected changes to your travel plans. Whether you’re curious about refund eligibility, flight credit options, or the specific terms associated with each fare type, we’ve got you covered. 

What is Southwest Airlines Cancellation Policy According To Your Fare?

With no change or cancellation fees, Southwest Airlines ensures flexibility and convenience for travelers. Below is the overview of all fares offered by the WN.

Wanna Get Away and Wanna Get Away Plus Tickets

  • Southwest Flight Cancellation of these low-priced fares allows for reusable flight credits.
  • Cash purchases are refunded as flight credits, while Rapid Rewards points are fully refunded to your Southwest account.
  • No refunds or credits are provided for no-shows or cancellations within 10 minutes of the flight.

Business Select, Anytime, and Senior Tickets

  • These fares offer more flexibility and generous cancellation policies.
  • Canceling Southwest Flight tickets results in full refunds to the original form of payment, whether paid with cash or Rapid Rewards points.
  • No-shows or cancellations within 10 minutes of departure lead to flight credit conversion for Business Select, Anytime, and Senior tickets.

Southwest Airlines Cancellation Policy for Flights Paid with Gift Cards and Companion Pass

Flights purchased using a gift card, are considered non-refundable and have slightly different regulations compared to tickets bought with cash or points.

If you decide not to take a flight that was purchased using a gift card, the funds will be retained as reusable flight credits.

In case you need to cancel your flight within 24 hours of departure and you paid for any portion of it with a Southwest gift card, you must contact Southwest Customer Relations.

Regarding Companion Pass fares, any taxes paid during the booking process are fully refundable and will be returned to the original payment method.

What are the Guidelines to Know Before Canceling the Southwest Flight?

Here are the key factors to consider before requesting Southwest Flight Cancelation – 

Non-Refundable Reservations Canceled within 24 Hours 

  • Online cancellations within 24 hours of booking allow for a refund to the original form of payment or conversion to flight credit.
  • Canceling reservations made with Southwest gift cards or LUV Vouchers within 24 hours requires contacting Customer Service.

Fare Differences

  • Changing to a flight with a higher fare may incur fare differences.
  • It is advisable to cancel the original flight and rebook a new one to maintain the ticket’s refundable status.

Southwest No-Show Policy

Canceling Business Select or Anytime tickets at least 10 minutes before departure results in a refund in the form of a Transferable Flight Credit.

Wanna Get Away or Wanna Get Away Plus funds are forfeited if not canceled 10 minutes before departure.

Southwest Reward Travel Reservations

  • Wanna Get Away or Wanna Get Away Plus reward travel reservations  – Failure to cancel results in the forfeiture of points, taxes, and fees.

Anytime or Business Select reward travel reservations – Points used for the booking are redeposited into the Rapid Rewards account, with taxes and fees converted into Transferable Flight Credit.

Fares Booked with Points

Canceling a fare booked with points refunds the remaining point balance to the original account, along with eligible taxes and fees.

EarlyBird Check-In Refundability

  • EarlyBird Check-In purchases are nonrefundable.
  • If Southwest cancels a flight, the cost of purchasing EarlyBird Check-Ins will be refunded.

Making Changes to an Existing Reservation

  • No Southwest Flight Change fees are charged for changing or canceling a flight, but fare differences may apply.
  • Cancellations should align with the No-Show Policy (at least 10 minutes before departure).

Viewing Flight Credit

  • Check flight credit on or through the Southwest app using the confirmation number and passenger name.
  • Flight credits are non-transferable and can only be used by the original ticketed passenger.

Canceling a Flight and Checking Refund Eligibility

  • Access or the Southwest app, enter your confirmation number and passenger name, and review available flight credit or refundable balances.
  • Choose between refund to the original form of payment or converting the fare into flight credit.
  • Cancel the flight for all passengers.

Refund Requests

  • Southwest Flight Cancellation Refund requests must include unused ticket information or proof of purchase, confirmation number, or other relevant flight details.
  • Requests can be made through Southwest Refunds Department or by calling customer service.

Using Flight Credit

  • Flight credit can be easily applied during the booking process on or the Southwest app.
  • Flight credits unexpired on or created on or after July 28, 2022, do not expire.
  • Expired flight credits with an expiration date on or before July 27, 2022, cannot be used.

What’s the difference between reusable and refundable when canceling a flight?

Reusable refers to the funds from various fare types such as Wanna Get Away, Wanna Get Away Plus, Anytime, and Business Select, which can be applied as flight credit towards a future trip. 

Flight credits that were created or remain unexpired after July 28, 2022, do not have an expiration date displayed until our systems are updated. However, flight credits with an expiration date on or before July 27, 2022, are considered expired based on their original expiration date. 

These funds can be reused as long as the cancellation is done according to our No-Show Policy, which requires canceling the flight at least 10 minutes before the scheduled departure time.

FareReusable (applied as flight credit toward a future trip)Refundable
Wanna Get AwayYesNo
Wanna Get Away PlusYesNo
Business SelectYesYes

How To Cancel Southwest Flight?

Canceling a flight can be a hassle, but Southwest Airlines aims to make the process seamless and convenient for its customers. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the steps to cancel a flight on Southwest Airlines. Whether you need a refund or flight credits, our easy-to-follow instructions will ensure a stress-free experience. 

Online – Follow these steps – 

  • Log in to your Southwest Airlines account by clicking on the “My Account” option in the top right-hand corner of the homepage.
  • Once logged in, you’ll find a list of your upcoming flights displayed in the middle of the screen.
  • Identify the flight you wish to cancel and click on the “Cancel Flight” button associated with that particular booking.
  • A confirmation screen will appear, prompting you to verify the flight you are canceling.
  • Choose the desired refund option based on your ticket type:
  • Fully refundable tickets: Opt for a refund to your original form of payment or hold the amount as flight credits for future use.
  • Non-refundable tickets (e.g., Wanna Get Away fares): Request flight credits for future use.
  • To finalize the cancellation, click the yellow “Cancel Flight” button located at the bottom of the screen.

Customer Service – Follow these steps – 

  • Find the Southwest Airlines Customer Relations phone number. You can usually find this on their official website or on your flight confirmation email.
  • Dial the Southwest Airlines Customer Relations phone number. Make sure you have a phone with a working connection and enough battery life to complete the call.
  • Wait for a representative to answer your call. There might be a brief wait time, so be patient.
  • Once connected, provide the representative with your booking details. This typically includes your flight reservation number, departure date, and the names of the passengers.
  • Inform the representative that you would like to cancel your flight. Be clear and concise in stating your intention.
  • Follow any instructions given by the representative. They may ask for additional information or confirm your identity to proceed with the cancellation.
  • If you paid for the flight using a Southwest gift card, let the representative know, as the Southwest cancellation policy may vary for gift card purchases.
  • If applicable, inquire about the refund options available to you. Depending on the fare type and the timing of the cancellation, you may be eligible for a refund or flight credits.
  • Confirm the cancellation details with the representative before ending the call. Make sure you understand any applicable fees or penalties associated with the cancellation.
  • Take note of any confirmation number provided by the representative. This can serve as proof of your cancellation and may be required for future reference.
  • If you have any further questions or concerns, address them with the representative before concluding the call.

Via mobile app – To access your reservation on the Southwest app or

  • Tap the three vertical lines in the upper left corner to open the menu.
  • Select “Look up reservations” from the menu.
  • Enter the Confirmation number and the Passenger’s First and Last name.
  • Tap “Retrieve reservation” to view your reservation on the Reservation Details page.
  • Review your cancellation details by tapping the “Cancel” button.
  • If you only have nonrefundable funds, you will only see the option to “Hold for future use.” Click “Cancel flight” to cancel the reservation for all passengers.
  • If you hold a refundable fare, the “Refundable” section will appear. Here, you can choose to “Request a refund” or “Hold for future use” as a travel fund. 
  • Click “Cancel Flight” to cancel the reservation for all passengers.
  • After completing the cancellation, a confirmation page will be displayed. It is recommended to note down the confirmation number for your records.

What is Southwest Refund Policy?

As per Southwest Airlines cancellation policy, here are the important points to consider – 

Refund Eligibility

  • Business Select/Anytime tickets are refundable, allowing you to choose between a refund to your original payment method or holding the value as flight credit.
  • Wanna Get Away and Wanna Get Away Plus tickets are non-refundable, but the value can be converted into flight credits or Transferable Flight Credits for future use.

Method-of-Payment Refunds

  • Refunds will generally be processed in the same form as the original payment.
  • Credit card refunds will be issued within seven business days, while cash refunds will be provided via check within 20 business days for domestic travel.
  • Points will be returned to the Rapid Rewards account used for the booking, and taxes/fees can be refunded or held as flight credits.

Southwest-Initiated Flight Cancellations

  • In case Southwest cancels your flight, you are entitled to a refund for unused transportation, including non-refundable tickets.
  • Bag fees and additional purchases like EarlyBird Check-In will also be refunded.

Reimbursement for Additional Expenses

  • If inconvenienced by Southwest Airlines due to flight cancellations or significant delays, you may request reimbursement for meals, hotel stays, and ground transportation.
  • Submit receipts via the Email Us option on, following the guidelines provided.

Tax Exemptions for Diplomats and International Travel:

  • Diplomats and individuals exempt from certain international taxes can request a refund of taxes paid by providing proof of exemption status via email.

Guidelines for Canceling Your Flight and Determining Refund Eligibility

  • Visit or open the Southwest app.
  • Choose “Look Up Reservation” or log in to your Rapid Rewards account for bookings made with it.
  • Enter your confirmation number and the passenger’s name.
  • View any available flight credit or refundable balances associated with the confirmation number.
  • If there’s a refundable value remaining, opt for a refund to the original payment method or convert it to flight credit.
  • Select “Cancel Flight” to cancel the flight for all passengers.
  • Refunds to credit cards may take up to two billing cycles to appear on your statement.
  • Flight credit is immediately accessible, and if you booked using your Rapid Rewards number, it will be added automatically to your Southwest account.

Request a refund from Southwest Airlines or discuss flight credit

  • Call Customer Care.
  • Send a written request to the Refunds Department at the following address:

Southwest Airlines

Refunds Department

P.O. Box 36649

Dallas, Texas 75235-1649.

Important notes for written requests or phone calls:

  • Refund requests must be made in writing and must include the confirmation number and any information on unused tickets.
  • When you call, be prepared to provide your booking reference, ticket number, or flight information.

Additional refund information

  • While Wanna Get Away and Wanna Get Away Plus fares are reusable but not refundable, Business Select and Anytime fares are refundable.
  • Unused, unrestricted, refundable tickets can be used for future travel or refunded within one year from the issue date.
  • Eligible refunds are issued based on the original payment method.
  • The Refunds Department processes eligible refunds within 7 business days of receiving the request. 
  • It may take up to 10 additional business days for your card-issuing bank to credit the refund to your account. 
  • The refund will appear on your statement within one to two billing cycles, depending on your individual billing cycle.

How much is the Southwest Airlines cancellation Fees?

Southwest Airlines stands apart with its customer-friendly policy of no change or cancellation fees.

Enjoy the flexibility to modify or cancel your flight without incurring any additional charges.

Southwest Airlines offers passengers flexible options when canceling flights, obtaining refunds, or using flight credits. By understanding the policies outlined in this article, you can navigate these processes seamlessly. Remember to check eligibility, follow the appropriate steps, and utilize flight credits wisely for hassle-free future travel with Southwest Airlines.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I cancel my Southwest flight?

Most flights can be easily canceled on Southwest website or app without needing to call.

On the airline’s website or app, go to Manage Reservations and select the Cancel option.

Southwest canceled my flight. How can I rebook or request a refund?

If your new flight(s) doesn’t fit your plans or you’re not automatically rebooked, you can change or cancel your flight.

What is the fee for changing a Southwest flight?

Southwest doesn’t charge fees for flight changes. However, you may need to pay the fare difference if the new flight you choose is more expensive than your original itinerary.

Is there a time limit for changes or cancellations?

Yes, changes or cancellations can be made up to 10 minutes before the scheduled departure time. For instance, if your flight was scheduled to depart at 8 a.m., you have until 7:50 a.m. to make changes or cancel. If you don’t travel or make changes/cancellations, our no-show policy will apply to your reservation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *